It was exactly the type of game the Angels can’t afford to lose with their disappointing start to the season.
The Halos couldn’t hold a two-run lead in the sixth inning and went on to lose on a sacrifice fly in the 10th by Mark Canha in a 5-4 walk-off loss to the A's in Sunday's series finale at the Coliseum. Reliever Ty Buttrey gave up a leadoff single to Matt Chapman, which set the stage for Canha to bring home automatic runner Franklin Barreto with a sac fly to right-center field. It dropped the Angels to 9-20 this season and 1-4 in extra innings.
"We've lost that game five times this year, maybe six," Angels manager Joe Maddon said. “We've had leads and gave them up. And I am not banging on the pitching. Overall, we pitched pretty well today. It sticks in my mind losing some games with leads late. We just have to be better at that."
The Halos had their chances, including in the top of the 10th, but Jason Castro popped out, Andrelton Simmons grounded out and David Fletcher lined out to strand automatic runner Jo Adell at second. It was a familiar theme for the Angels, who went 2-for-12 with runners in scoring position.
“There's a lot of things we've got to get better at,” Maddon said. “And I'm not gonna fault the effort. That's not about it. It's about performance right now, we've got to somehow will that base hit. Somehow, we've got to make the pitch, the two-out RBI we're permitting. Those are the little things. The biggest part is the little things, and we haven't been good at it.”
The Angels took a 3-2 lead in the third on a three-run homer from Shohei Ohtani, who snapped an 0-for-19 skid that was the longest of his career. Ohtani crushed a 2-1 sinker from Frankie Montas to the opposite field, as it left the bat at 111.3 mph and went a projected 439 feet, per Statcast.
Los Angeles tacked on another run in the fifth on a two-out RBI single from Brian Goodwin, who was in an 0-for-20 drought. It knocked Montas from the game, but J.B. Wendelken struck out Adell to end the inning.
But the Angels couldn't hold the lead, as the A's scored a pair of runs in the sixth against right-hander Dylan Bundy. Before that, Bundy had only given up two unearned runs in the first, keyed by a dropped fly ball from Adell in right field to open the inning.
“If we catch the ball in the first inning, Dylan is cruising into that [sixth] haven given up no runs and with 15 fewer pitches,” Maddon said. “All those things multiply. We can’t make those mistakes.”
Bundy came out for the sixth with a two-run lead and quickly got two outs. But it unraveled from there, as he gave up a double to Robbie Grossman and an RBI single to Stephen Piscotty. After a single by Tony Kemp, reliever Mike Mayers came in for Los Angeles, and he induced a soft grounder from Sean Murphy. But the ball got by Simmons and Fletcher up the middle to bring home the game-tying run.
Fletcher might have had a chance to dive and keep it on the infield, but he peeled off to cover second and deferred to Simmons, who couldn’t quite get there. It was one of those little things that Maddon referenced that didn’t go the Angels’ way, and it ended up hurting them in the loss.
“All you can do is go out there and keep playing every single game,” Bundy said. “Every single person in here is trying 100 percent. Things just aren't falling our way right now. So, I mean, I'm confident eventually they will, I just don't know when."